No need to say much about the movie itself. This is Fred Astaire at his best singing and dancing. A true classic. Every home should have one. The dancing sequences alone, including the one Astaire dances on cieling and walls, are worth watching again and again.
The movie has indeed been released for home use under various formats over the years. To my knowledge, this is its first DVD release, which unfortunately is most disappointing in term of both sound and picture quality.
The sound is lacklustre and among the poorest quality I have ever heard on a DVD; and this despite the Dolby Digital logo on the cover.
But the real problem with this DVD is its picture quality, which is unacceptably poor, considering the potentials of the format. Compare this to other DVDs or other versions of the films and you will see it from the first minute to the last. Any decent VHS cassette will score FAR better than this DVD in term of picture quality. My laserdisc version of the film, for instance, looks sharp and bright, with near perfect resolution, after comparison.
The only consolation on this DVD, perhaps, is the bonus on how the "cieling dance" sequence was filmed. There is nothing new for a real Astaire fan to learn about here, but at least the filming is clearly explained and illustrated. But is this alone worth the price of the disc?
In short, this is a release that simply fails to do justice to both a great film and a great home movie format that is the DVD.
Those of you lucky enough to have the laserdisc version should stick to it and treasure it so dearly, for who knows when another DVD version (worthy of the name) will come along.